COMPUTERS/INTERNET/SECURITY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

COMPUTERS/INTERNET/SECURITY

Jun 18 19:51

80,606 Accounts Shut Off in 2020; Media Outlet Seeks Detroit Residents Struggling to Pay Their Electric Bills

By B.N. Frank

COVID mandates and restrictions have made it difficult and sometimes impossible for countless Americans to afford their bills. ProPublica wants to hear from Detroit residents who are struggling to pay for their electricity...

Jun 18 18:54

$450M More for Company to Turn U.S. Troops into “Invincible Technomancers” via Artificial Intelligence

By B.N. Frank

Expert warnings about Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) continue to increase. For one thing – it’s not always accurate. Nevertheless, employers continue to incorporate it into their businesses. Some companies are training U.S. military personnel to use it for defense purposes...

Jun 18 11:17

FCC proposes ban on Chinese surveillance cameras, other products

U.S. regulators proposed a ban on products from Huawei Technologies Co. and four other Chinese electronics companies, including surveillance cameras widely used by schools but linked to oppression in western China, stepping up pressure on tech suppliers alleged to be security risks.

Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co. and Dahua Technology Co., whose cameras can be found in U.S. schools and local government facilities, were targeted in an order the Federal Communications Commission adopted in a 4-0 vote on Thursday. Also named in the order were telecom giant ZTE Corp. and two-way radio maker Hytera Communications Corp

The order would forbid U.S. sales of specified telecommunications and surveillance equipment from the companies. The action begins a period of review before a final vote on the matter.

"We are taking direct action to exclude untrusted equipment and vendors from communications networks," said FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel.

Jun 18 11:13

EXCLUSIVE Pacific undersea cable project sinks after U.S. warns against Chinese bid

  • HMN Tech's bid priced at more than 20% below rivals - sources
    World Bank said all bids deemed non-compliant
  • U.S. warned Chinese firms posed a security threat
  • Undersea cables emerged as sensitive area of Pacific diplomacy


SYDNEY/BEIJING, June 18 (Reuters) - A World Bank-led project declined to award a contract to lay sensitive undersea communications cables after Pacific island governments heeded U.S. warnings that participation of a Chinese company posed a security threat, two sources told Reuters.

The former Huawei Marine Networks, now called HMN Technologies and majority owned by Shanghai-listed Hengtong Optic-Electric Co Ltd, submitted a bid for the $72.6 million project priced at more than 20% below rivals Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN), part of Finland’s Nokia, and Japan’s NEC, the sources said.

Jun 18 08:56

Google fixes seventh Chrome zero-day exploited in the wild this year

Google has released Chrome 91.0.4472.114 for Windows, Mac, and Linux to fix four security vulnerabilities, with one of them a high severity zero-day vulnerability exploited in the wild.

This version, released today, June 17th, 2021, to the Stable desktop channel, has started rolling out worldwide and will become available to all users over the next few days.

Google Chrome will automatically attempt to upgrade the browser the next time you launch the program, but you can perform a manual update by going to Settings > Help > 'About Google Chrome'.

Jun 18 06:26

Hackers are using an old but devious trick to spread new malware

icrosoft security experts are sounding the alarm on a new malware threat that uses an old but devious method to implant its code onto victims’ computers

It seems that the malware operators behind SolarMarker are finding new success with an old trick called “SEO poisoning.” Basically, according to Microsoft, this involves “stuffing” thousands of PDF documents with SEO keywords and links which start a cascade of redirections that eventually leads the unsuspecting user to malware. “The attack works by using PDF documents designed to rank on search results,” Microsoft Security Intelligence explained on Twitter in recent days. “To achieve this, attackers padded these documents with >10 pages of keywords on a wide range of topics, from ‘insurance form’ and ‘acceptance of contract’ to ‘how to join in SQL’ and ‘math answers

Jun 17 14:53

Russian hackers attacking organizations through system used by USAID, says Microsoft

Russia-linked hackers behind the SolarWinds attack have been targeting government agencies, think tanks and non-governmental organizations through the email system of the U.S. Agency for International Development, Microsoft said late Thursday.

The wide-scale attack was uncovered this week by the Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center who on Thursday identified the group responsible in a statement as Nobelium, which has been blamed for the November attack through widely used SolarWinds software that aided the breach of at least nine U.S. federal agencies as well as dozens of companies, including Fortune 500 businesses.

Jun 17 12:53

Peloton Bug Could Give Hackers Control of Exercise Equipment

Threat Post reports that the popular Peloton Bike+ and Peloton Tread exercise equipment contain a security vulnerability that could expose gym users to a number of cyberattacks ranging from personal data theft to secret video recording.

According to research from McAfee’s Advanced Threat Research (ATR) team, the bug would allow a hacker to gain remote root access to the tablet installed on the Peloton devices. This tablet is the touch screen installed on the device to deliver streaming content including workout coaching and even allowing video calls using an integrated camera.

Jun 17 11:15

Demand for developers is soaring - and employers are struggling to hire

Tech jobs have rarely been hotter: job search engine Adzuna has reported that for the past few months, there have been consistently over 100,000 tech job offers per week live on the platform, with one week in May even seeing an unprecedented peak of 132,000 offers.

The data, which was compiled for the UK government's digital economy council, suggests that the industry is recovering from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic at pace. In comparison, last June saw tech vacancies fall to less than 44,000 offers.

But according to the council, the new figures aren't only reflective of a strong come-back from a year of crisis. Tech hiring hasn't been this high since 2016.

Jun 17 09:58

Pelotons can be hacked letting creeps install malware and SPY on you, security firm says

After Peloton riders' private data was exposed by a software bug earlier this year, researchers have found some of the tech company's products are vulnerable to malware, letting hackers spy on unsuspecting riders.

Cybersecurity firm McAfee said cybercriminals could trick Bike+ users into logging into nefarious apps disguised to look like Netflix or Spotify with their credentials, and spy on them through their webcams.

It can be done by inserting a USB key at any time (in the gym, somewhere in the supply chain) with a boot file image containing the dangerous code and allowing criminals remote access to the Bike+, Peloton's $2,495 bike.

'They can enable the bike’s camera and microphone to spy on the device and whoever is using it,' McAfee wrote in the report.

Jun 17 08:27

Emails from 2016 Show Amazon Ring’s Hold on the LAPD Through Camera Giveaways

By Matthew Guariglia and Karen Gullo

In March 2016, “smart” doorbell camera maker Ring was a growing company attempting to market its wireless smart security camera when it received an email from an officer in the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Gang and Narcotics Division, who was interested in purchasing a slew of devices.

The Los Angeles detective wanted 20 cameras, consisting of 10 doorbell cameras and 10 “stick up” cameras, which retailed for nearly $3,000. Ring, headquartered in nearby Santa Monica, first offered a discount but quickly sweetened the deal: “I’d be happy to send you those units free of charge,” a Ring employee told the officer, according to emails released in response to California Public Records Act (CPRA) requests filed by EFF and NBC’s Clark Fouraker. These emails are also the subject of a detailed new report from the Los Angeles Times...

Jun 17 06:32

Knee-Deep in the LED: Hackers Get Doom Running on Ikea Smart Bulb (with an external display)

A group of hackers has gotten Doom up and running on an unusual platform: an Ikea smart bulb. The group wrote up its project on Next-Hack and shared details of the implementation.

The team originally planned to deploy an Ikea Trådefri lamp. While the modest 40MHz Cortex M4 was plenty powerful, the chip only had 32KB of RAM. This was deemed impossible. Then, some months later, Ikea updated with a new model. These new lamps featured an 80MHz Cortex-M33 and 108KB of RAM in total with 1MB of NAND flash. The team also attached an additional 8MB of NAND flash.

Jun 17 06:03

Elon Musk's Starlink is Ready to Offer Satellite Internet for Commercial Flights

With each new initiative, Elon Musk proves that his limits are beyond the skies. Now he seeks to solve a big problem for travelers: using WiFi on the plane. Musk's company Starlink announced that it is ready to offer satellite internet on commercial flights, and they are negotiating with several airlines to provide the service in the near future.

With more than 1,500 satellites in orbit, Starlink currently offers internet in hard-to-reach and rural areas in several countries.

In a panel at the Connected Aviation Intelligence summit, Jonathan Hofeller, vice president of Starlink, revealed that Starlink was in talks with commercial airlines to provide them with internet service.

Jun 16 19:01

Bombshell! Manipulated Google Search Results PROVED

If you think Google Search gives you organic search results, here's proof that Google Search is out to win your heart and mind with manipulated data. Search results that are modified to induce a change of opinion. Search results that are specifically programmed for each cohort. Search results that are designed to control a population.

In this Red-Pill video, we will dig deep into the next stage of data collection. From Federated Learning of Cohorts, you will see how this is used with a Big Tech agenda. And Google is not alone.

Jun 16 18:28

Facial Recognition Apps for Anyone Who Wants to Identify People Without Their Knowledge or Consent: What Couldn’t Go Wrong?

By B.N. Frank

The use of Facial Recognition technology continues to be controversial. Why wouldn’t it be? It’s privacy invasive and it’s NOT always accurate. These inaccuracies can and have had life-altering as well as life-threatening consequences. Despite this, apparently some tech companies still want to sell it to anybody and everybody, in some cases for just $30 per month...

Jun 16 12:16

Judicial Watch: Documents Show CA State Officials Coordinated with Big Tech to Censor Americans’ Election Posts

“Judicial Watch announced today that it received 540 pages and a supplemental four pages of documents from the office of the Secretary of State of California revealing how state officials pressured social media companies (Twitter, Facebook, Google (YouTube)) to censor posts about the 2020 election. Included in these documents were “misinformation briefings” emails that were compiled by communications firm SKDK, that lists Biden for President as their top client of 2020. The documents show how the state agency successfully pressured YouTube to censor a Judicial Watch video concerning the vote by mail and a Judicial Watch lawsuit settlement about California voter roll clean up.”

Jun 16 12:10

A Study Analyses The Top 100 Data Breaches Over The Past 15 Years, Demonstrating How The Online Security Landscape Has Changed

A major highlight of the study ended up detailing how frequent major data breaches were becoming. While 2004 saw only a single significant breach, 2018 by comparison witnessed 21 separate incidents. That number itself is also a 250% increase from 22017s recorded 6. While it should be noted that 2020 actually witnessed a down swing in breaches, at a total of 12, cyber attacks have seemed to become a norm of the internet space.

Jun 16 11:47

Gaming Giant CD Projekt Red Admits Ransomware Hackers Are Leaking Data

Polish game developer CD Projekt Red, the popular company behind the Witcher series and Cyberpunk 2077, has revealed this week that proprietary data taken in a ransomware attack disclosed four months ago is circulating online.

Ars Technica reports that CD Projekt Red, the Polish game developer behind the Witcher series and Cyberpunk 2077, has revealed that data stolen during a ransomware attack it disclosed four months ago is being circulated online.

Company officials said in a statement:

Today, we have learned new information regarding the breach and now have reason to believe that internal data illegally obtained during the attack is currently being circulated on the Internet.

We are not yet able to confirm the exact contents of the data in question, though we believe it may include current/former employee and contractor details in addition to data related to our games.

Jun 16 10:33

Congress unveils new laws to curb power of Big Tech, but NONE of them address viewpoint discrimination censorship and assaults on free speech

It is important to note that none of the proposed bills in any way address Big Tech’s free speech violations and censorship practices. All of them center around tech industry monopolies while completely sidestepping the First Amendment issue. -- The obvious reason, of course, is that Congress is completely bought off by Big Tech, Big Pharma and other oppressive industries that could not care less about our Constitution and will do anything they can to destroy it.

Jun 16 10:07

Critical ThroughTek Flaw Opens Millions of Connected Cameras to Eavesdropping

The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) on Tuesday issued an advisory regarding a critical software supply-chain flaw impacting ThroughTek's software development kit (SDK) that could be abused by an adversary to gain improper access to audio and video streams.

"Successful exploitation of this vulnerability could permit unauthorized access to sensitive information, such as camera audio/video feeds," CISA said in the alert.

ThroughTek's point-to-point (P2P) SDK is widely used by IoT devices with video surveillance or audio/video transmission capability such as IP cameras, baby and pet monitoring cameras, smart home appliances, and sensors to provide remote access to the media content over the internet.

Jun 16 09:03

Windows 11: Is Microsoft having its Spinal Tap moment?

I can't get that scene from the classic comedy This Is Spinal Tap out of my head. You know, the one where dimwitted rocker Nigel Tufnel explains why the numbers on his amp all go to 11. "Well, it's one louder, isn't it? It's not ten."

In its long history, Microsoft has never been afraid to go full Nigel Tufnel.

Throughout the first three decades of Windows, Microsoft cranked up its Hype Machine™ every two or three years to get the buying public excited about a new Windows version. Sometimes that hype served as a power washer to wipe away the stains of a previous, unloved version, like Windows 7 successfully cleaning up the mess left by Windows Vista. Sometimes it marked a genuine sea change, like the merging of the consumer and business lines in Windows XP. And sometimes it was just a pure cash grab.

Jun 16 08:20

Smart IoT Devices Can Be Weaponized By Hackers To Launch Even Larger DDoS Attacks

DDoS threats are immensely harmful to the day-to-day operational activities of targeted networks operated by corporations and or governments and can cause considerable damage.

This means billions of smart home devices could be susceptible to cyberattacks and silently weaponized to launch DDoS attacks in a simultaneous fashion.

The proliferation of IoT devices has increased the number of devices a malicious actor can weaponize. The combination of IoT and DDoS may result in a devastating cyberattack using armies of IoT devices.

A problem we notice is that much of the world's electronic devices are produced in China. As a result, the communist government may have the ability to backdoor these devices and weaponize them against the US.

Jun 16 08:20

Smart Tech Expert: Future “Smart Homes” Will Include Sensors in Clothing, Furniture, etc. Connected to Hazardous “Smart” Meters

By B.N. Frank

It’s amusing as well as alarming when industry folks go to great lengths to depict “Smart Homes” as something desirable now and in the future. For many years already, experts have warned about privacy and cybersecurity risks associated with ALL “Smart” and wireless technology including “Smart Home” appliances and technology. In fact, Samsung has discontinued its Smart Home “SmartThings Ecosystem”.

In regard to utility “Smart” Meters – electric, gas, and water – they are also privacy invasive and at a high risk for cybersecurity issues. Additionally, they have been associated with HIGHER bills, fires, explosions, and other inconveniences including health problems which have led to lawsuits...

Jun 16 05:13

EU-bankrolled cybersecurity firm develops intrusive tech that allows ‘anonymous’ snooping & remote control of net devices – media

Flush with EU funds, a shadowy Spain-based cyberintelligence firm has reportedly created invasive surveillance tech that enables clients to take “remote and invisible control” of net-connected devices while evading detection.

The “anonymous interception” products, branded as ‘Invisible Man’ and ‘Night Crawler’, can remotely access files on a target’s device, discern their location, and even discreetly switch on cameras and microphones, according to WIRED magazine.

The developer, Mollitiam Industries, is also reportedly hyping up a tool that allows for the “mass surveillance of digital profiles and identities” across social media and even the dark web – which sounds strikingly similar to its work on a data-harvesting project funded in part by the EU’s Regional Development Fund.

Jun 15 19:00

SUPPRESSING THE CURES: YouTube suspends Sen. Ron Johnson for uploading videos about hydroxychloroquine

Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin has been suspended by YouTube for uploading videos that the Google-owned platform says are contributing to the spread of “misinformation” about the Wuhan coronavirus (Covid-19).

Johnson had uploaded several videos about the benefits of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) in the treatment of the Chinese Virus, which is not allowed because Tony Fauci and Rochelle Walensky say so. Consequently, Johnson’s channel has been struck from uploading any more videos for the next seven days.

“YouTube’s arrogant Covid censorship continues,” Johnson wrote. “How many lives will be lost as a result? How many lives could have been saved with a free exchange of medical ideas? This suppression of speech should concern every American.”

Jun 15 15:22

Roger Waters turns down ‘huge money’ for FACEBOOK ad: ‘No f–kin’ way’…

Roger Waters has revealed that Facebook honcho Mark Zuckerberg offered him big bucks to use Pink Floyd’s classic 1979 anthem “Another Brick in the Wall, Part 2” in an Instagram ad. -- However, the co-founding member of the iconic rock band turned the “little p–k” down flat — with a cantankerously foulmouthed touch.

Jun 15 13:02

Censorship: Facebook Has Removed 16 Million Pieces of Content & Added ‘Warnings’ On 167 Million

The censorship of information is at an all time high, but do people really recognize the extent to which it has been and is being carried out? A recent article published in the British Medical Journal by journalist Laurie Clarke has highlighted the fact that Facebook has already removed at least 16 million pieces of content from its platform and added warnings to approximately 167 million others. YouTube has removed nearly 1 million videos related to, according to them, “dangerous or misleading covid-19 medical information.”

Jun 15 12:04

Twitter now censoring all criticism of Critical Race Theory in latest “thought police” crackdown to protect the racist, bigoted Left

Rachel Bovard, Senior Director of Policy for the Conservative Partnership Institute, explained that Twitter silenced CRA for merely sharing a toolkit that parents can use to try to combat the use of CRT at their children’s public schools.

Jun 15 10:42

Hackers Can Exploit Samsung Pre-Installed Apps to Spy On Users

Multiple critical security flaws have been disclosed in Samsung's pre-installed Android apps, which, if successfully exploited, could have allowed adversaries access to personal data without users' consent and take control of the devices.

"The impact of these bugs could have allowed an attacker to access and edit the victim's contacts, calls, SMS/MMS, install arbitrary apps with device administrator rights, or read and write arbitrary files on behalf of a system user which could change the device's settings," Sergey Toshin, founder of mobile security startup Oversecured, said in an analysis published Thursday.

Jun 15 10:38

Apple Issues Urgent Patches for 2 Zero-Day Flaws Exploited in the Wild

Both CVE-2021-30761 and CVE-2021-30762 were reported to Apple anonymously, with the Cupertino-based company stating in its advisory that it's aware of reports that the vulnerabilities "may have been actively exploited." As is usually the case, Apple didn't share any specifics on the nature of the attacks, the victims that may have been targeted, or the threat actors that may be abusing them.

One thing evident, however, is that the active exploitation attempts were directed against owners of older devices such as iPhone 5s, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPad Air, iPad mini 2, iPad mini 3, and iPod touch (6th generation).

Jun 15 10:11

Over 65,000 ransomware attacks expected in 2021: former Cisco CEO

U.S. companies are expected to endure over 65,000 ransomware attacks this year — and that's “a conservative number,” John Chambers, former CEO of Cisco Systems (CSCO) told Yahoo Finance Live.

With McDonald’s (MCD), JBS (JBSAY), and Colonial Pipeline Co. all recently coming under cyberattacks, Chambers does not foresee an end to the onslaught of cybersecurity threats anytime soon. He estimated that the number of ransomware attacks in 2021 could end up being as high as 100,000, with each one costing companies an average of $170,000.

In the case of Colonial, just one password was needed for hackers to compromise the entire company’s IT infrastructure. This led to Colonial and JBS paying a combined $15 million in ransom against FBI advice. (The Justice Department later recovered about $2.3 million of the cryptocurrency, about half of Colonial’s initial ransom.)

Jun 15 10:10

Scientists think they can use your body to wirelessly charge electronics

Wireless charging is a smartphone feature we’ve come to take for granted and expect from every high-end handset. But wireless charging tech is only in its infancy, and what we currently refer to as wireless charging is very limited. To wirelessly recharge a battery, we need particular components installed in smartphones, watches, and headphones. We then place these gadgets on a charging mat or in a case, and we can’t use them while they recharge. Wireless charging is little more than a convenience that allows us to continually top-up the smartphone’s battery while we’re not using it.

Jun 15 09:38

iOS 14 could become Apple's Windows XP

So, it turns out that come the release of iOS 15 (and iPadOS 15) later this year, users will get a choice.

Quite an important choice.

iPhone users can choose to hit the update button and go down the iOS 15 route, or play it safe and stick with iOS 14.

Given that Apple has seen strong, you could say passionate, adoption figures for new releases of iOS over the years, I expect that a good bulk of iDevice users will make the leap to iOS 15.

People are drawn to new iOS and iPadOS releases. There's a feeling of getting a whole bunch of new features for free.

Jun 15 07:08

White House calls Capitol riot a 'terrorist attack', introduces Pentagon anti-radicalization to stop the 'lethal' rise of 'white supremacy' in the military and pushes to 'purge' the internet of 'extremist content'

The Pentagon is to start training for service members leaving the military to prevent them being radicalized by violent extremists, as part of the country's first domestic terrorism strategy due to be unveiled on Tuesday.

It follows a review that stated the most dangerous elements of the threat today come from white supremacists and anti-government extremists.

The White House also called the Capitol riot a 'domestic terrorist attack' in the report and backed a 'purge' of extremist content online.

Jun 15 05:06

Irish police to be given powers over passwords

Irish police will have the power to compel people to provide passwords for electronic devices when carrying out a search warrant under new legislation.

The change is part of the Garda Síochána Bill published by Irish Justice Minister Heather Humphreys on Monday.

Gardaí will also be required to make a written record of a stop and search.

This will enable data to be collected so the effectiveness and use of the powers can be assessed.

Special measures will be introduced for suspects who are children and suspects who may have impaired capacity.

The bill will bring in longer detention periods for the investigation of multiple offences being investigated together, for a maximum of up to 48 hours.

Jun 14 13:44

SECRET PROJECTS IN THE BACKGROUND? “THERE IS REASON FOR ZUCKERBERG TO BE CONCERNED IF THE FACEBOOK BOX IS OPENED.”

Facebook launched a manhunt after the company’s information was leaked – a video leaked last week also showed CEO Mark Zuckerberg discussing the troubling topic with its director of internal technology communications. Being fired for unauthorized sharing of company information is not at all surprising, it happens anywhere. However, based on the video and accusations leveled in recent months and years, there is a legitimate suspicion that Facebook fears leaking more secret internal “projects” than any company in the world.

Project Veritas has become Facebook’s staunch enemy in recent months. The page that reveals the truth to the public, which distinguishes itself as a non-profit press organization, brings one revelation after another.

Jun 14 13:36

Chip shortages lead to more counterfeit chips and devices

Beginning with the first Wuhan quarantine in January 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic hit the world from both sides of the law of supply and demand. Independent Distributors of Electronics Association (IDEA) founder Steve Calabria believes this two-fisted squeeze will spawn a surge in counterfeit electronics, with consequences for longevity and reliability of equipment built with substandard components.

Supply, demand, and counterfeit

Pandemic lockdowns in industrial cities have pinched supply of both finished goods and raw materials, while demand for electronic products has skyrocketed due to both the need for remote work/school gear and simple boredom from people unable to travel, dine out, and party in the ways they're accustomed to.

Jun 14 13:18

Microsoft Is Building Something Sony, Nintendo, Google And Amazon Can’t Match

This weekend will mark the arrival of Microsoft’s E3 Xbox showcase, but we’re already getting a lot of info about their master plan for long-term market domination. And it’s something that I simply don’t think any of its competitors have the ability to match.

Microsoft is expanding the Xbox ecosystem in a dramatic way. Soon enough, it’s going to encompass all of the following:

  • The lowest priced next gen console (Xbox Series S)
  • The most powerful next gen console (Xbox Series X)
  • Xbox Game Pass running on consoles/PC with downloadable games.
  • Xbox Game Pass being able to have game streaming through smart TVs and web browsers with only a controller needed as hardware.
  • A dedicated, standalone Xbox Game Pass streaming device that will be cheaper than consoles.
Jun 14 13:03

Cryptocurrency isn’t as impenetrable as you think. This training even explains how to make your own

TLDR: The Cryptocurrency with Ethereum and Solidity Blockchain Developer Bundle explains the entire crypto phenomenon and also explores creating your own real world cryptocurrency.

If your knowledge of cryptocurrency only extends as far as shaking your head dismissively when someone brings up Elon Musk’s darling dogecoin, you might be missing the larger point. While much of the cryptocurrency market is still driven by wild speculation with minimal basis in real world logic, crypto and its blockchaining roots are anything but a fly-by-night idea.

In fact, many would argue the decentralized technology that fuels crypto creation on platforms like Ethereum are ready to fundamentally change the way digital information, business, finance, and security are all handled.

Jun 14 12:18

“Death By Design” — The Dirty Secret Of Our Digital Addiction — Free Viewing Through June 17

Consumers love – and live on – their smartphones, tablets and laptops. A cascade of new devices pours endlessly into the market, promising even better communication, non-stop entertainment and instant information. The numbers are staggering. By 2020, four billion people will have a personal computer. Five billion will own a mobile phone.

But this revolution has a dark side that the electronics industry doesn’t want you to see.

In an investigation that spans the globe, award-winning filmmaker Sue Williams investigates the underbelly of the international electronics industry and reveals how even the tiniest devices have deadly environmental and health costs...

Jun 14 12:12

Blockchain News – Long Island Man’s Bitcoin In Limbo As Hackers Target Cryptocurrency Exchanges – CBS New York

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Hackers are now targeting cryptocurrency exchanges like Coinbase and leaving investors without access to their bitcoin.

As the interest in cryptocurrency continues to climb, the safety and security of investment apps are being called into question.

CBS2’s Natalie Duddridge spoke to a Long Island man whose bitcoin is now in limbo.

“I do believe my account was hacked. It had to be,” Frank Pinto said.

Pinto started investing in bitcoin in 2017.

He used an app called Coinbase, which is like a stock exchange for cryptocurrency.

A few months ago, he tried to log in and got an alert instead saying, “Sorry, account temporarily disabled. Please contact support.”

He tried, but Coinbase has no phone support, so he emailed dozens of times. They finally responded saying: “You will receive a response from the customer complaints officer within 15 business days.”

Jun 14 12:08

Amazon Hackers Made $832,135 In Just 10 Days—Here’s How

Amazon’s live hacking event
And doing good is what Amazon’s live hacking event that took place across ten days in March was all about. More than 50 hackers from nine different countries participated in the 10-day virtual event to identify vulnerabilities across some of Amazon’s core assets. The Amazon Vulnerability Research Program itself was launched back in April 2020 on HackerOne, but the virtual live hacking event took things to a whole other level.

$832,135 in bounties paid
HackerOne could not share details regarding the total number of vulnerabilities beyond stating that there was “safe mitigation of all reported issues.” However, a spokesperson did confirm that “the top performers in the live event took home in excess of $100,000 in bounties.” The final total for all bounties paid was a staggering $832,135.

Jun 14 12:01

REvil Hits US Nuclear Weapons Contractor: Report

“We hereby keep a right (sic) to forward all of the relevant documentation and data to military agencies of our choise (sic)” REvil reportedly wrote.

Sol Oriens, a subcontractor for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) that works on nuclear weapons with the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), last month was hit by a cyberattack that experts say came from the relentless REvil ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) gang.

The Albuquerque, N.M. company’s website has been unreachable since at least June 3, but Sol Oriens officials confirmed to Fox News and to CNBC that the firm became aware of the breach sometime last month.

The company’s statement, captured in a Tweet stream posted by CNBC’s Eamon Javers on Thursday:

Jun 14 11:15

Vodafone Chooses Partners To Build First European RAN Network

Mobile and broadband operator Vodafone has chosen six partners to build Europe’s first commercial Radio Access Network (RAN).

Vodafone has selected Dell Technologies, NEC, Samsung, Wind River, Capgemini Engineering and Keysight Technologies to help it build one of the largest Open RAN networks in the world.

Vodafone said the partnerships would build on its new Open RAN lab in Newbury, England and its planned digital skills hubs in Spain and Germany.

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Mobile operators and governments want to encourage the development of Open RAN technology to help more vendors enter a market dominated by Huawei, Ericsson and Nokia.

Jun 14 11:09

Windows 10 ransomware protection It’s not widely known to consumers and small business users that Microsoft offers built-in ransomware protection. Turning it on is pretty simple: type in "Ransomware Protection" in the Windows 10 Cortana search bar (typic

Windows 10 ransomware protection
It’s not widely known to consumers and small business users that Microsoft offers built-in ransomware protection.

Turning it on is pretty simple: type in "Ransomware Protection" in the Windows 10 Cortana search bar (typically in the bottom lower left of the screen) then select the "Ransomware Protection" screen.

Toggle on the "Controlled folder access." Then you have the option to select which folders you want protected.

Click on "Protected folders." The Protected Folders screen should already be populated by folders that are protected by default. You’re also given the option to add other protected folders.

In addition, you have the option to add folders from Microsoft’s file hosting service OneDrive, if you subscribe to that service.

Jun 14 11:05

Windows 10 only until 2025; Computers No longer Have The New Operating System

The message has been in the news for the past few days as the most widely used computer operating system (OS) in Microsoft Windows. The news comes ahead of an event scheduled for June 24. Six years ago, Microsoft announced that it would no longer have a Windows version. Presented by. But the company is now preparing to introduce a new version of Windows once again. It is said that it will be Windows 11.

While news and rumors about the new version of Windows are active, another piece of news is being discussed. It is reported that Microsoft will end technical support for the current version of Windows 10 in 2025 when this new version of Windows arrives.

EOL ExtremeTech reports based on the information on the End of Life page. It says that the Windows 10 Home and Pro editions will be out of service on October 14, 2025.

Jun 14 10:28

What Makes Quantum Computing So Hard to Explain?

QUANTUM COMPUTERS, YOU might have heard, are magical uber-machines that will soon cure cancer and global warming by trying all possible answers in different parallel universes. For 15 years, on my blog and elsewhere, I’ve railed against this cartoonish vision, trying to explain what I see as the subtler but ironically even more fascinating truth. I approach this as a public service and almost my moral duty as a quantum computing researcher. Alas, the work feels Sisyphean: The cringeworthy hype about quantum computers has only increased over the years, as corporations and governments have invested billions, and as the technology has progressed to programmable 50-qubit devices that (on certain contrived benchmarks) really can give the world’s biggest supercomputers a run for their money. And just as in cryptocurrency, machine learning and other trendy fields, with money have come hucksters.

Jun 14 09:53

Samsung smartphone warning: Pre-installed apps caught spying

It has been a whirlwind week for security updates and vulnerability flaws. Not only has one of the biggest data leaks been found online, but Google’s Chrome also received an urgent patch to fix problematic issues.

It seems that now it is Samsung’s turn to update its mobile phones’ security. Unfortunately, seven flaws hide in Samsung’s default, pre-installed apps by a mobile security startup company.

Samsung suffered from a different flaw earlier this year. Security researchers discovered that certain Galaxy Note 20 devices could have been unlocked by using any fingerprint for authentication. That flaw has since been fixed. Keep reading to find out how to fix the latest issue.

Here’s the backstory

The flaws could be used to access and edit your contacts, calls and text messages. Unless you update your Samsung device, you will still be vulnerable to attack. Samsung declined to specify which devices are affected, only saying it occurred in “selected” models.

Jun 14 09:33

Ransomware hackers now 'bigger threat' than nation state actors

Cybercriminals are getting more professional, warns GCHQ head

Ransomware now represents the largest threat to online security for the UK, the head of GCHQ’s cybersecurity arm has warned.

Lindy Cameron, chief executive of the National Cyber Security Centre, has said that ransomware incidents against individuals and businesses around the world are escalating and becoming more professional in their approach.

Speaking to London’s Royal United Services Institute, Cameron said that while online spying from hostile nations remains a “malicious strategic threat”, it is the rising threat of ransomware attacks that must be addressed with utmost urgency

Jun 14 09:21

Hackers Stole Nearly 26 Million User Login Credentials for Sites Like Amazon, Google, Facebook

Hackers using a custom Trojan-type malware stole nearly 26 million login credentials - emails or usernames and associated passwords - from almost a million websites over a two year period, including from such namesakes as Amazon, Facebook, and Twitter, according to cybersecurity provider NordLocker.

The malware infiltrated over 3 million Windows-based computers between 2018 and 2020, with the cyber intruders making off with around 1.2 terabytes of personal information, according to a case study carried out by NordLocker in partnership with a third-party firm specializing in data breach analysis.

The 26 million stolen login credentials were across twelve different website types, including social media, online gaming, and email services. They included such household names as Google (1.54 million), Facebook (1.47 million), Amazon (0.21 million), Apple (0.13 million), Netflix (0.17 million), and PayPal (0.15 million).

Jun 14 07:11

MOZILLA SUGGESTS REGULATORS ISSUE LAWS THAT CURB RECOMMENDATIONS OF “CONSPIRACY THEORY VIDEOS”

The Mozilla Foundation used to do one thing, and do it well: lead the development of the free and open source Firefox browser. Sadly, that browser, once with a huge chunk of the market and representing a revolutionary step up from Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, is falling by the wayside as Google’s Chrome has taken over.

Chrome and the giant behind it are riddled with (un)answered questions and concerns about privacy and safety; while Mozilla has always touted itself as the opposite, an organization that is all about promoting those values.

Why then, when Mozilla these days feels the need to “take on” a Google property, is the story not about all the drawbacks of using Chrome and promoting the use of Firefox? Why is Mozilla instead virtue signaling by joining the “war on misinformation” and calling out Google’s YouTube?

Jun 13 10:45

Avaddon ransomware shuts down and releases decryption keys

This morning, BleepingComputer received an anonymous tip pretending to be from the FBI that contained a password and a link to a password-protected ZIP file.

This file claimed to be the "Decryption Keys Ransomware Avaddon," and contained the three files shown below.

After sharing the files with Fabian Wosar of Emsisoft and Michael Gillespie of Coveware, they confirmed that the keys are legitimate.

Jun 13 10:43

Audi, Volkswagen data breach affects 3.3 million customers

Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (VWGoA) is the North American subsidiary of the German Volkswagen Group. It is responsible for US and Canadian operations for Volkswagen, Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, and VW Credit, Inc.

According to data breach notifications filed with the California and Maine Attorney General's office, VWGoA disclosed that a vendor left unsecured data exposed on the Internet between August 2019 and May 2021.

On March 20th, VWGoA was notified by the vendor that an unauthorized person had accessed the data and may have obtained the customer information for Audi, Volkswagen, and some authorized dealers.

VWGoA states that the breach involved 3.3 million customers, with over 97% of those affected relating to Audi customers and interested buyers.

The data exposed varies per customer but could range from contact information to more sensitive information such as social security numbers and loan numbers.

Jun 12 11:34

Now the supporters of cancel culture are being cancelled

The freedom to say only things that the state, Silicon Valley or the SWP approves of is not freedom at all. We need full freedom of speech, unfettered by state interference, capitalist-class meddling and cancel-culture mobs, in order that everyone may express themselves and, more importantly, that everyone else may weigh up what is being said and decide for themselves if it is right or wrong, good or bad. As the SWP and others must surely now realize, if you set the trap of censorship, it will one day ensnare you. The solution is clear: defend liberty of thought and speech for all, including your enemies.

Jun 11 18:03

Biden & Boris Team Up to Develop U.S./U.K Partnership on 6G Development that Includes A.I.; Never Mind the Risks, Warnings and Opposition

By B.N. Frank

A 2019 survey revealed that 82% of Americans thought Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) technology would be more harmful than helpful. They seem to have been onto something as warnings about A.I. keep pouring in.

Nevertheless, they are already working on developing 6G and implementing more controversial A.I.

Jun 11 14:02

The Colonial Pipeline Hack, The 'Russians', & The FBI's Ransom-Grab - What Really Happened?

Speculation has been running rampant over today's FBI press conference revealing the recovery of most of the ransom paid to "Russian" hackers by Colonial Pipeline.

Ben THE Kaufman summarizes:

Media: "The FBI hacked Bitcoin and can take anyone's funds."

Reality: The pipeline hackers didn't have the Bitcoin in the first place but kept it in a remote server the FBI could access with subpoena.

Media coverage is mostly lies at this point.

Which raises the following point (h/t Jordan Schachtel):

So the "hackers" brought down the largest pipeline on the east coast...

...but couldn't spend 50 bucks on a clean hardware wallet to secure their bitcoin?

Makes sense to me!

So what really happened?
Jordan Schachtel explains at 'The Dossier' Substack

Jun 11 13:37

Silicon Valley Thought India Was Its Future. Now Everything Has Changed.

On June 3, Google had to apologize to the Indian state of Karnataka for search results that prominently listed the state’s primary tongue, Kannada, as the “ugliest language in India.” As the search engine moved to fix the issue, the state’s minister for forest, Kannada, and culture, Arvind Limbavali, threatened legal action. Later that very week, Limbavali demanded that Amazon’s Canada outpost apologize after it listed a bikini for sale that featured Karnataka’s flag. When Amazon did not respond, Limbavali stated he’d take legal action against the e-commerce platform as well.

These incidents occurred at a terrible time for Google and Amazon. Throughout this year, India’s ultraconservative government has consistently threatened major Big Tech at a level it hadn’t dared before.

Jun 11 13:01

VERIFY: No, Indiana's unemployment office is not sending texts to verify claimants' identity

As a reminder, DWD (supposed to be Department of Workforce Development, Indiana) WILL NOT send claimants a text message. If you receive a text from someone claiming to be us, do NOT click on the link.

Jun 11 12:51

400,000 without power in Puerto Rico after fire, cyberattack

There were at least 400,000 people without power in Puerto Rico on Thursday night as the company that took over the island's power transmissions has been faced with fire and cyberattack.

Luma, the company that took over Puerto Rico's Electric Power Authority on June 1, has seen more than one million customers this month without power at some point, officials said, USA Today reported.

At the height of the most recent outage, there were 700,000 customers without electricity.

The company has faced two issues this week that have hindered its performance: a fire at a main substation causing the outages and a cyberattack that has limited the ability of customers to get in contact with Luma.

Jun 11 12:39

Pirated Software Helped An Unknown Malware Infect 3.2 Million PCs

There are many reasons not to download pirated software, with the most obvious being that it’s illegal and you’re essentially “stealing”. The second reason is that because you can’t always trust the source of pirated software, it could lead to bad situations like this, where recently a report from NordLocker revealed how an unknown malware flew under the radar for two years, infecting 3.2 million PCs in the process.

The malware, which is unnamed due to the fact that it wasn’t discovered until recently, is said to have managed to spread to millions of PCs thanks to it hiding inside of pirated software like video games like tools like Adobe’s Photoshop. As a result, this malware also stole an estimated 1.2 terabytes worth of personal information from the computers it infected, like files from the Desktop and Download folders, image files, Word files, text files, and more.

Jun 11 12:35

Facebook to Release Smart Watch with 2 Cameras for Those Who Don’t Mind How Much the Company Is Already Spying on Them

By B.N. Frank

Facebook is no stranger to user privacy violations. In fact, just last month the company was exposed for secretly tracking people through their iPhones. Nevertheless, the company is still planning to release its first ever smart watch to compete with other smart watches that are also extremely privacy invasive...

Jun 11 09:51

HOW CONTACT TRACING WORKS – TWO (EQUALLY CREEPY) CASE STUDIES

Is humanity aware of the multivariate methods of contact tracing beyond the toggle switch in iOS and Android? And just how do the methods being used by the Anglo-American Establishment at Oxford University in the above Telegraph story differ from those being dreamt up by Silicon Valley?

Jun 11 08:54

Hackers steal 26 MILLION logins for Amazon, Apple, Facebook and other tech giants after targeting PCs and making off with payment information from three million devices in latest major security breach

Hackers have stolen 26 million user logins for tech giants including Amazon, Apple, Facebook as well as vital payment information in the latest online security breach.

The malware hack, exposed by cybersecurity provider NordLocker, also saw payment details nabbed from 3.25 million computers that run Windows software. It was uncovered after researchers discovered a 1.2 terabyte database filled with stolen personal information.

The other firms whose accounts were targeted include eBay, Instagram, Netflix, Paypal, Roblox, Steam, Twitch and Twitter. It saw victims computers' infected by opening emails, or downloading bootleg software, and enabled the malware to take screenshots of their browsing activity - including private login details.

According to a report released by NordLocker on Wednesday, an unidentified, Trojan-type malware stole the files, including 26 million login credentials, between 2018 and 2020.

Jun 11 08:47

EA Games has been HACKED: Cybercrooks steal source code for popular games including FIFA 21

Hackers have stolen the source code for Electronic Arts (EA) games including FIFA21 and tools like the 'Frostbite' engine that powers titles such as the 'Battlefield' series.

The California-based video game company acknowledged the cybercrime on Thursday June 10, following a report from the news outlet Vice.

A spokesperson for EA, however, has said that the attackers did not access any private player data and that the breach is unlikely to affect their business operations.

Jun 11 08:33

Some people can’t get FCC subsidy because “Street” isn’t the same as “St.”

Some broadband users who qualify for the government's new $50-per-month subsidies haven't been able to obtain the discounts because of technical problems in the Federal Communications Commission's rollout of the program.

The problems stem from the FCC's National Verifier and how the broadband providers' systems interact with the FCC database, as detailed in an article published by Protocol today. Small mismatches between entries in databases—such as having an address recorded as "Elm St." in an ISP's system and "Elm Street" in the FCC's—can cause people's applications to be rejected.

Jun 11 08:29

For $2,700, You Too Can Have Your Very Own Robot Dog

You’re probably familiar with Spot, Boston Dynamics’ highly advanced, nightmare-inducing robot dog. And while it went on sale last year, few of us have an extra $74,500 lying around to buy one. However, Chinese firm Unitree Robotics has a similar quadruped bot that’s not only a fraction of the size, but it also starts at a mere $2,700. For an advanced robot dog, that’s actually pretty dang affordable.

Jun 11 08:21

Narrative On Recent Supply Chain Cyber Attacks Already Wearing Thin

There was a moment of sheer hilarity earlier today when, during a Congressional Hearing, the CEO of Colonial Pipeline Joseph Blount took the merely farcical episode of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware hack – when, as a reminder, a ragtag band of elite “Russian” hackers somehow managed to penetrate the company’s cyberdefenses but was so stupid it left most if not all of the $4.4 million bitcoins it demanded in ransom in an easily traceable address for the FBI to track down and magically confiscate (it is still unclear how the Feds got the private key to access the “hackers” digital wallet) in days if not hours – and elevated it to a level of sheer ridiculous absurdity when he told Congress that he didn’t consult the FBI before paying the ransom.

This, pardon the parlance of our times, is complete bullshit: either the CEO is lying or, worse, he is telling the truth and as some have speculated, he, the FBI and the “hackers” are all in on this so-called ransomware breach…

Jun 11 03:34

Washington Moves To Make Sensitive Private Data Available For "Minority Report"-Style AI Research

Earlier this week, the investigative journalism outfit ProPublica published a story using data gleaned from the tax returns of America's richest individuals to determine exactly how much each of them paid in tax vs. the amount by which their wealth increased in a given year, a number the reporters described as their "true tax" rate.

Needless to say, the story inspired intense conversation online, where rival media organizations were quick to assume that the data was somehow "leaked" to PP. ProPublica was vague in its report, refusing to say or even hint at how it obtained the data, which led one reporter to wonder whether it might have been handed off to PP by academic researchers. It's also worth mentioning that leaking the tax data from inside the IRS would constitute a major federal crime (obtaining it via a third party who had been given the data for some legitimate purpose).

Jun 10 10:11

Best internet speed test 2021: Test your connection

Broadband should be a utility that just works. But sometimes it doesn't and broadband speed tests can help you debug a network problem for big data jobs or figure out why Netflix is not working.

Jun 10 08:50

Here We Go Again: JBS "Paid" "Russian" "Hackers" $11 Million In Bitcoin To Resolve "Ransomware" Attack

There was a moment of sheer hilarity earlier today when, during a Congressional Hearing, the CEO of Colonial Pipeline Joseph Blount took the merely farcical episode of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware hack - when, as a reminder, a ragtag band of elite "Russian" hackers somehow managed to penetrate the company's cyberdefenses but was so stupid it left most if not all of the $4.4 million bitcoins it demanded in ransom in an easily traceable address for the FBI to track down and magically confiscate (it is still unclear how the Feds got the private key to access the "hackers" digital wallet) in days if not hours - and elevated it to a level of sheer ridiculous absurdity when he told Congress that he didn't consult the FBI before paying the ransom.

This, pardon the parlance of our times, is complete bullshit: either the CEO is lying or, worse, he is telling the truth and as some have speculated, he, the FBI and the "hackers" are all in on this so-called ransomware breach...

Jun 10 08:46

Granholm admits adversaries capable of shutting down US power grids

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm on Sunday admitted that U.S. adversaries currently have the capability to shut down U.S. power grids with cyberattacks.

CNN's "State of the Union" anchor Jake Tapper asked Granholm whether she believed that U.S. adversaries pose a potential threat to U.S. power grids, prompting Granholm to respond, "Yeah, they do."

"I think that there are very malign actors who are trying even as we speak. There are thousands of attacks on all aspects of the energy sector and the private sector generally," Granholm said. "The meat plant, for example. It's happening all the time. This is why the private sector and the public sector have to work together and this is what the president is doing."

Jun 10 08:43

‘There are a lot of parallels’: FBI Director Wray compares ransomware threat to 9/11

The FBI is investigating about 100 different types of ransomware, Director Christopher Wray revealed in a new interview, in which he compared the security challenges posed by cyberthreats to the terror threat of 9/11.

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal in an interview published Thursday, the FBI director made the comments in the wake of two recent ransomware attacks that sent meat and gas prices skyrocketing as suppliers were left unable to move their products.

“There are a lot of parallels, there’s a lot of importance, and a lot of focus by us on disruption and prevention,” Wray explained, referring to this month’s hack against JBS Foods, the world’s largest meat supplier, and the similar attack on Colonial Pipeline in May.

“There’s a shared responsibility, not just across government agencies but across the private sector and even the average American.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Okay, there is some kind of agenda to lock down the internet going on here.

Jun 10 07:05

Blinken Props Up Biden In European Charade For New Cold War

Authored by Finian Cunningham via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

Blinken is staying close to his boss during the whirlwind tour, because Biden is liable to spin out of control and reap an embarrassing collapse.

It’s a big ask for a frail 78-year-old U.S. president to rally the world around a series of myths and falsehoods. Biden flies to Europe this week to galvanize allies under strong American leadership of supposed shared “democratic values” in a “historic confrontation” with the “autocracies” of China and Russia.

President Joe Biden’s worldview is so disconnected from reality that it is going to prove difficult mentally for him to consistently and coherently make the case over a series of summits in the next week.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What is of deepest concern to me, watching this charade unfolding, which would be hysterically funny, if not for the potentially deadly consequences, is that it is imminently possible, that Blinken will not be able to manage keeping the wanted "cold wars" against Russia and China, from turning "hot".

The intelligence operatives in both countries are no slouches, and have
probably very much "twigged on" to the reality, that the Unhinged Surveilled State of Amerika, is "woke, broke, dystopian, and at war with itself."

Can a country dealing with these realities succeed in a war against both Russia and China, which would probably be the case, if the US aggravates both or either enough?!?

Folks, the short answer here is, "HELL, no!!"

So, since those in power in this country give not a flying frisbee about what happens to its citizens, should war ensure from their idiotic foreign policies, because they have taken measures to protect themselves from most unpleasantness, we have to take care of ourselves and each other the best we can.

Please make sure that you have potable water; storable food; and extra medications for yourselves and your pets, should the excrement hit the fan.
Flashlights; batteries; basic first aid equipment are also of the highest importance. Find people you know with whom you can create a community, where you can share services and barter.

We could very well be going back to a 19th century life style in a moment's notice, should a series of EMPs take out the electrical grid in this county, in light of the reality that our power grids are woefully unprotected.

Jun 10 06:32

China's White Collar Workers Face Invasive Surveillance By 'Big Tech' Overlords

For a Communist nation, the People's Republic has notoriously weak labor protections. While gig economy workers face tremendous pressure to put in long hours with few breaks, as it turns out, their white-collar cousins are facing similar pressures to put in long hours as well.

Nikkei's story starts out with testimony from Andy Wang, an IT professional in Hong Kong, whose company has been ratcheting up efforts to monitor its workforce. They call it DiSanZhiYan, or "Third Eye." The software, installed on the laptop of every employee, monitors all their communications and movements, as well as their browsing activity and software and app usage.

The invasive software would automatically file complaints and every once in a while an employee would be fired. Finally, things like 20-hours work days began to seem impossibly daunting.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Watch for this to become an " expected reality" at American companies as well.

Jun 10 06:22

Here We Go Again: JBS "Paid" "Russian" "Hackers" $11 Million In Bitcoin To Resolve "Ransomware" Attack

There was a moment of sheer hilarity earlier today when, during a Congressional Hearing, the CEO of Colonial Pipeline Joseph Blount took the merely farcical episode of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware hack - when, as a reminder, a ragtag band of elite "Russian" hackers somehow managed to penetrate the company's cyberdefenses but was so stupid it left most if not all of the $4.4 million bitcoins it demanded in ransom in an easily traceable address for the FBI to track down and magically confiscate (it is still unclear how the Feds got the private key to access the "hackers" digital wallet) in days if not hours - and elevated it to a level of sheer ridiculous absurdity when he told Congress that he didn't consult the FBI before paying the ransom.

This, pardon the parlance of our times, is complete bullshit: either the CEO is lying or, worse, he is telling the truth and as some have speculated, he, the FBI and the "hackers" are all in on this so-called ransomware breach..

Jun 09 13:18

War Against Big Tech Begins: Ohio Files Lawsuit To Regulate Google As A Public Utility

In a groundbreaking lawsuit filed Tuesday, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost asserts that he wants Google recognized as a public utility, rather than a public firm, to rein in how it distributes search results to Ohioans.

The complaint was dubbed “landmark” by Yost, who said that Google is discriminatory and anti-competitive.

He filed the complaint in Delaware County Court, claiming that Ohio is the first state in the nation to do so.

Jun 09 11:36

Intel Plugs 29 Holes in CPUs, Bluetooth, Security

The higher-rated advisories focus on privilege-escalation bugs in CPU firmware: Tough to patch, hard to exploit, tempting to a savvy attacker.

Intel has unleashed 29 security advisories to plug up some serious bugs in the BIOS firmware for Intel processors, as well as in its Bluetooth products, Active Management Technology tools, the NUC Mini PC line, and, ironically, in its own security library.

Details about the advisories can be found at Intel’s Product Security Center.

Intel’s senior director of communications, Jerry Bryant, said in a blog post on Wednesday that Intel’s mostly digging these security issues up internally – as in, 95 percent – through its own diligence, with big chunks of them coming through its bugs bounty program and the company’s own research.

Jun 09 11:33

The 'killer USB' that FRIES laptops: Malicious drive uses a high voltage to destroy the computer's circuit board

( Do not plug in unknown USB drives in your laptop)

  • The malicious, custom-built drive has been dubbed ‘USB Killer’
  • It uses a high voltage and current to ‘fry’ the laptop's components
  • Prototype was created by an electronics expert known as Dark Purple
  • Dark Purple designed the drive using parts bought in China
  • It was described as an 'atomic bomb: cool to have but not to be applied'

Security experts have warned of the dangers associated with USB drives for some time, but until now, the biggest danger has been viruses and malware.

Now there is a new potential threat that turns the lowly thumb drive into a ‘laptop killer’ by using a high voltage to destroy the computer’s components.

Dubbed ‘USB Killer’, the crude device was created by a Russian electronics expert known as Dark Purple.

Jun 09 11:19

Cryptomining at Home: How Much Money Can You Make?

What Do You Need to Start Mining Crypto?

The first thing you’ll need to mine cryptocurrency is a powerful computer. The amount of money you earn scales linearly with the computational power you contribute to the network. This is why you’ll also find individuals renting entire warehouses and filling them to the brim with computers, solely for cryptocurrency mining.

On a more reasonable level though, you will need a computer with a relatively recent graphics card. PC gamers are likely familiar with the role of a graphics card. But in a nutshell, it is a specialized piece of hardware designed specifically for certain applications, including graphics rendering and crunching numbers for cryptocurrency mining.

Assuming your PC is already outfitted with a mid to high-end GPU though, you have everything needed to start mining.

Calculating Potential Profits From Crypto Mining

Jun 09 10:48

Tuesday's Internet Outage Was Caused By One Customer Changing A Setting, Fastly Says

Fastly, the company hit by a major outage that caused many of the world's top websites to go offline briefly this week, blamed the problem on a software bug that was triggered when a customer changed a setting.

The problem at Fastly meant internet users couldn't connect to a host of popular websites early Tuesday including The New York Times, the Guardian, Twitch, Reddit and the British government's homepage.

"We experienced a global outage due to an undiscovered software bug that surfaced on June 8 when it was triggered by a valid customer configuration change," Nick Rockwell, Fastly's senior vice president of engineering and infrastructure, said in a blog post late Tuesday.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

If architects built buildings the way programmers write software, the first woodpecker to come along would destroy all of civilization!

Jun 09 10:37

Fastly’s Global Internet Meltdown Could Be A Sign Of Things to Come

By David S. Wall, University of Leeds

For an hour on the morning of June 8, dozens of the world’s most-visited websites went offline. Among those affected were Amazon, Reddit, PayPal and Spotify, as well as the Guardian, the New York Times and the UK government website, gov.uk. Together, these websites handle hundreds of millions of users.

The issue was quickly traced to Fastly, a cloud computing company which offers a content delivery network to the affected websites. Designed to alleviate performance bottlenecks, a content delivery network is essentially a system of computers or servers that hold copies of data across various points of a network. When it fails, the websites it supports cannot retrieve their data and are forced offline...

Jun 09 10:33

Speeding up an old iPhone in the time it took to drink a cup of coffee

"My iPhone feels so slow lately."

It was an iPhone 6s Plus. Pretty old as iPhones go, but will be supported by iOS 15 for another year, so it still had some life in it.

Since it was still raining, and I was settling in with my third coffee -- this one a decaf (shame on me) -- I offered to help.

Help was accepted.

Jun 09 10:30

The Colonial Pipeline Hack, The 'Russians', & The FBI's Ransom-Grab - What Really Happened?

Speculation has been running rampant over today's FBI press conference revealing the recovery of most of the ransom paid to "Russian" hackers by Colonial Pipeline.

Ben THE Kaufman summarizes:

Media: "The FBI hacked Bitcoin and can take anyone's funds."

Reality: The pipeline hackers didn't have the Bitcoin in the first place but kept it in a remote server the FBI could access with subpoena.

Media coverage is mostly lies at this point.

Which raises the following point (h/t Jordan Schachtel):

So the "hackers" brought down the largest pipeline on the east coast...

...but couldn't spend 50 bucks on a clean hardware wallet to secure their bitcoin?

Makes sense to me!

Jun 09 08:53

MSM EXPERIENCES GLOBAL INTERNET OUTAGE

Huge swaths of mainstream news sites, and other major online services, have all gone down within minutes of each other this morning. The Guardian, BBC, New York Times, The Independent, CNN, Buzzfeed, the New Yorker and other outlets are all returning 503 errors. And major service sites such as Twitch, Amazon and PayPal are down too.

Jun 09 08:26

'A wake-up call to the web': Security experts warn mega internet crash that took Amazon, Netflix and UK Government offline yesterday could be the tip of the iceberg if lessons aren't learned

David Warburton, of the cybersecurity company F5 Labs, said centralisation is fairly new for the internet - and will probably continue to raise issues. He told The Guardian: 'The web as a whole was intended to be decentralised.

'By not relying on any one central system, it meant that many different components could fail and internet traffic could still find a way to get where it needed to go.

'What we've seen over the past decade, however, is the unintentional centralisation of many core services through large cloud solution providers like infrastructure vendors and CDNs.'

Former deputy national security adviser for intelligence security between 2014 and 2018, Paddy McGuinness, said yesterday's incident should serve as 'a wake-up call', and the Government should expand the current security approach.

Jun 09 07:45

How A Fastly Customer "Triggered" Yesterday's "Broad And Severe" Global Internet Outage

Fastly, a major content delivery network, triggered a major internet blackout on Tuesday morning has blamed a software bug.

We first noticed the problem a little after 0600 ET Tuesday when countless websites, including Reddit, Financial Times, PayPal, and other websites, went down.

"We experienced a global outage due to an undiscovered software bug that surfaced on June 8 when it was triggered by a valid customer configuration change," Nick Rockwell, Fastly's senior vice president of engineering and infrastructure, wrote in a blog post late Tuesday.

Rockwell said, "the outage was broad and severe, and we're truly sorry for the impact to our customers and everyone who relies on them." He said the company "detected the disruption within one minute, then identified and isolated the cause, and disabled the configuration," adding that "within 49 minutes, 95% of our network was operating as normal."

Jun 09 07:35

@DailyExposeUK suspended permanently by Twitter for quoting UK Government Statistics

The Daily Expose has had its main Twitter account suspended for quoting UK Government statistics.

Twitter deemed the tweet to break its regulations on spreading “misleading information on Covid-19”.

The suspension of @DailyExposeUK comes just three days after Twitter permanently suspended @DailyExposeNews

Jun 09 06:31

APPLE AND TSA TEAM UP TO CREATE DIGITAL ID FOR AIR TRAVEL

Apple is continuing to push forward with the digitization of all things by teaming up with the TSA to allow users to scan drivers’ licenses or state IDs in its Wallet app.

Jun 09 06:23

LAWSUIT ACCUSES DIGITAL RECOGNITION NETWORK OF SECRETLY COLLECTING BILLIONS OF LICENSE PLATES

A recently filed lawsuit accuses Digital Recognition Network of covertly collecting vehicle data on millions of Americans and selling it for a profit.

Jun 09 06:08

Linux Foundation readies Global COVID Certificate Network

When the coronavirus vaccines first started arriving many assumed that most people would get a vaccine. But thanks to a shortage of supply in many countries, misinformation, and paranoia, even in the United States, only just over half of the population has been vaccinated. Easily imitated paper vaccinated certificates are almost useless for proving vaccination status. So, there's been lots of talk, but not much action, on a reliable, easily accessible vaccination record, aka a vaccination passport. Until now. The Linux Foundation Public Health (LFPN) is getting the Global COVID Certificate Network (GCCN) ready for deployment.

There are many needs for a secure vaccination record. For example, some states, such as Texas, want to forbid employers from firing potentially unvaccinated employees. However, employers usually have the right to discharge employees who deliberately put the lives of their coworkers and customers in jeopardy.

Jun 08 23:08

Ohio files lawsuit to declare Google a public utility

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost (R) on Tuesday filed a lawsuit asking the court to declare Google a public utility, which would subject the Silicon Valley giant to government regulation.

Yost’s complaint, filed in Delaware County Court, alleges Google has used its dominance as a search engine to prioritize its own products over “organic search results” in a way that “intentionally disadvantages competitors.”

“Google uses its dominance of internet search to steer Ohioans to Google’s own products--that's discriminatory and anti-competitive,” Yost said in a statement. “When you own the railroad or the electric company or the cellphone tower, you have to treat everyone the same and give everybody access."

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